How to book a DJ with confidence
Advice to Help You Book Your Entertainment
Most people don’t book DJs that often so, here’s some tips on what to ask.
1. Are they available for your date?
Begin your phone call by indicating the date, time, and location of your event. If they’re unavailable there’s not much point prolonging the call but you could always ask them to recommend other DJs.
2. How long have they been a DJ & how many events have they performed?
A professional, experienced DJ will be able to plan & smoothly guide your celebration from start to finish allowing you to relax and enjoy the party.
3. What type of music do they provide and will they play requests?
It’s your party! You want someone who takes an interest in what YOU want. You want a DJ who is flexible so that any request from your guests can be fulfilled (providing it meets your acceptable music criteria). A professional will concentrate on quality of the sound, not quantity and will spend time on the night ensuring that your seated guests can talk comfortably while others are dancing.
4. What is their appearance like?
Will they wear a formal dinner suit (tuxedo), tidy-casual, or a T-shirt, jeans and trainers? Find out ahead of time and make your preferences known! Different events command different attire.
5. What kind of equipment do they use & what is their technical expertise?
You are paying money for a professional and they should have brand-new-looking, quality equipment and know how it operates. Make sure it’s all professional equipment, not home stereo or consumer grade. There is a difference!
6. Do they have Public Liability Insurance?
Many venues now insist that all entertainers have their own insurance. Accidents are extremely rare but for peace of mind it’s worth checking that the entertainment you book does have the necessary cover – or you could be liable if damage or injury is caused by the DJ you have hired. Many hotels now have a policy of refusing entertainment if they cannot produce evidence of suitable insurance (check the small print of your venue hire documents).
7. Do they have back-up equipment on hand in case of an emergency?
Even professional equipment can fail on occasion. Usually, only the top-notch pros invest the extra money to ensure that everything works and backup systems are in place. Booking a reliable DJ is a very important decision for the success of your event.
8. Will they personally be the DJ for your reception?
Some DJ’s will book your event and then pass it on to another DJ to play your night. Some (almost always the cheap ones) don’t even bother to turn up if a more lucrative booking comes along! Make sure you get what you are paying for.
9. How much do they charge?
Not surprisingly, most professional, reputable DJ’s charge more for their services than a hobby DJ who is just looking to make a few extra pounds on the side. Question a company that is low in cost… there’s a good chance you will be putting the success of your event at risk in order to save a few pounds*.
Also, keep in mind all the time and money you already have committed to your event and the impact the DJ has on how everything turns out. If a family friend offers to do it for £100 less than a reputable, experienced, professional DJ, think twice before jumping at the lower price. For most wedding receptions it is the combined efforts of many professionals who work together to ensure your day is successful. Your evening is as important, so choosing a professional Wedding DJ is always a good investment.
DJs are available at all levels and all price points – from £100 to £1000 or more. Usually you get what you pay for. Wedding DJ prices may vary from area to area but the national average for a good quality, full service, professional DJ is £400-£900
10. Do they require a deposit and a written agreement?
If not, why not? If a DJ is serious about his business, he will want an agreement and a deposit. The agreement should offer a guarantee that he will show up on the day and will perform for the times you have decided on. If there’s no deposit and no agreement, there’s nothing to bind him to your event. A professional DJ will insist on a deposit to confirm your date and a booking agreement is your protection.